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25 Jul 2011 22:02


Politics: Obama speech light on policy, heavy on politics

  • We were planning on live-blogging the President’s primetime speech on the debt ceiling, but there wasn’t much to live-blog about. He didn’t support or reject any new policies, or endorse a specific strategy for raising the debt limit. Rather, the President doubled-down on the importance of avoiding default, reinforced hard distinctions between him and House Republicans, and make slight adjustments to his political positioning. He warned, in his most explicit language yet, of the consequences default would have for average Americans. He came out hard for progressive taxation, hammering the Republicans for refusing to consider raising taxes on the rich, and explicitly asked constituents to call their representatives in Congress and voice support for the White House’s “balanced.” In general, as was the case in his press conference last Friday, the President ended up sounding a whole lot more partisan than normal, but didn’t deliver any game-changers. source

02 Jun 2011 15:45


Biz, U.S.: Moody’s threatens U.S. credit rating downgrade over debt crisis

  • Full faith and credit: Moody’s Investors Service warns that a failure by the U.S. Congress to come to an agreement on raising the debt limit could imperil the country’s AAA credit rating: “The heightened polarization over the debt limit has increased the odds of a short-lived default. If this situation remains unchanged in coming weeks, Moody’s will place the rating under review.” You may remember a similar warning from Standard and Poor’s last April — it’s becoming increasingly clear that the debt limit struggle, in addition to the gaping chasm between what Democrats and Republicans would care to do on spending and deficit issues (such a chasm usually means gridlock), is causing angst for financial agencies. source